Despite Bloomberg’s efforts, property tax abatement renewal is likely

June 19, 2012 04:30PM

Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s efforts to revise the long-standing tax abatement afforded to condominium and co-op owners in the city is meeting fierce resistance in Albany, Crain’s reported. The State Assembly is resistant to altering the law and appears set to renew the current 17.5 percent tax break through 2016.

The law was first put into place 16 years ago as a stopgap solution for an inequity between tax rates for homeowners and for apartment owners. But it’s endured through four renewals, and costs the city about $462 annually, according to Crain’s. About $260 million of the abatement goes to apartment owners whose tax burdens are now less than they would be had they been taxed like typical homeowners.

Bloomberg’s proposal had aimed to reduce the breaks for the wealthiest residents of luxury Manhattan and Brooklyn buildings that benefit most from the breaks. But the city never delivered on its promise to produce a report detailing the deficiencies of the property tax structure, and state legislatures don’t appear compelled to change the law, Crain’s said.

“If the abatement is renewed as is through 2016, the foregone property-tax revenue would increase to about $525 million a year by 2016, based on our forecast for growth in assessed value,” said Ana Champeny, an Independent Budget Office analyst. [Crain’s]